Free events and activities

Debating the Mayflower
20th June, 6:30pm
London Bubble
Join us for a critical discussion during Refugee Week with Georgie Wemyss and Darren Chetty about the legacy of the Mayflower voyage.

This discussion will explore how we can mark the 400th anniversary of the ship’s sailing alongside histories of empire and colonialism.
What are the questions we need to ask to broaden out the story from a straightforward narrative of progress?
How were the people who travelled on the Mayflower changed by the voyage, and by the encounter?
How has the world been changed by the encounter?

Find out more and book your free tickets here

Georgie Wemyss is a lecturer in social sciences at the University of East London and co-director for the Centre for research on Migration, Refugees and Belonging. Her book The Invisible Empire: White Discourse, Tolerance and Belonging explores how differing narratives of Britishness obscure colonial histories in ways that work against the belonging of second and third generation British citizens in the present.

Darren Chetty is a writer, teacher and researcher. He has published academic work on philosophy, education, racism, children’s literature and hip-hop culture. He is a contributor to the bestselling book, The Good Immigrant, edited by Nikesh Shukla and published by Unbound.

Refugee Week is a nationwide programme of arts, cultural and educational events that celebrates the contribution of refugees to the UK, and encourages a better understanding between communities. This year it takes place between 17th and 23rd June.



The Deal took place on Saturday 18th May in the City of London. It was an interactive research performance which will explored the motives of the Separatists (who formed the bulk of the passengers on the Mayflower), their negotiations with King James I, and the role of the City of London in the financing of the voyage.

The event started at the Dutch Church,  a site of refuge for protestant refugees in the Sixteenth century, before winding its way through small roads, squares and alleyways to arrive at All Hallows Church, the oldest church in the City of London.

Passamezzo, experts in sixteenth and seventeenth century music, set the scene with songs and dances from the time.

You can read more about this event here


The following events took place in Autumn 2018.

Charting the Mayflower – open workshops
Saturday 3rd November, 10.30am – 12.30pm
Surey Docks Farm
Almost 400 years ago the Mayflower left Rotherhithe’s shores with people on board seeking a new life across the Atlantic.
Their quest, and its legacy, has become symbolic of America and shaped global dynamics.
But who were the passengers on board? Why did they get on the ship, and why do we remember the name of the Mayflower above all of the other ships that sailed to America in the seventeenth century?
Free. Suitable for all ages
Click here to read more

Talk with Brian Lavery
Thursday 25th October, 7-8pm
the world’s leading authority on the ships of the Virginia line.
He will be talking about Rotherhithe in 1620, how the Mayflower operated and the conditions the passengers experienced on board.
Free, booking required
Click here to read more
Lantern Making – open workshops
October & November 2018, various times & venues
Make your lantern to bring along to our community lantern procession.
Free. Suitable for ages 7 upwards, under 12s should be accompanied.
Click here to read more
Illuminate Rotherhithe Lantern Procession
23 November, 5pm onwards
Free. Suitable for all ages
Starts at Mayflower park and moves through the streets of Rotherhithe, SE16.
Click here to read more
The Measuring of the Mayflower
Sunday 30th September, 3pm
Kings Stairs Gardens, SE16.
More information here
(Part of Thames Festival 2018)

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